American Morning

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April 15th, 2011
07:38 AM ET

Good samaritan who picked up sole survivor of car drowning speaks out

New York (CNN) - Moments after the mother of four young children plunged her minivan into the Hudson River, she expressed second thoughts about killing herself and her children, the woman's lone surviving son told police and the woman who found him soaking wet by the road.

The 10-year-old boy, Lashaun Armstrong, hoisted himself out of the van's driver-side window, swam to shore, then tried to flag down help by the side of a road in Newburgh, New York, some 60 miles north of New York City, that town's Fire Chief Michael Vatter said.

Meave Ryan told HLN's Vinnie Politan on Thursday that she noticed the shivering boy "yelling and screaming, 'Help me, help me, please help me.'"

After the boy told Ryan that his mother, Lashonda Armstrong, had driven their car into the river, Ryan asked him to get in her vehicle. She said she drove toward the water, then went in knee-deep, but couldn't see any sign of the vehicle or any other survivors.

The boy eventually recalled to Ryan that, as the car was moving, his mother went into the backseat and "had all her children cradled in her arms." According to Ryan's recollection of her conversation with Lashaun, he quoted his mother as saying, 'If I'm going to die, ... you're all going to die with me.'"

Lashaun told Ryan that he resisted and broke free, yelling out the window for help. Ryan said that the boy told her that as he was trying to escape, "maybe (his mother) had a break of reality," and the boy said his mother then cried out, "Oh my God, I made a mistake."

She climbed back into the front seat and tried to put the car in reverse to pull it out of the water, the boy told Ryan and police, according to Police Lt. Pat Arnold.

But it was too late. Read More

Meave Ryan, the good samaritan who picked up the survivor and Dr. Jeff Gardere speak to CNN's American Morning about the tragedy and the psychological effects of it.


Filed under: Crime
April 14th, 2011
07:59 AM ET

Tracking a serial killer

New York (CNN) - High-resolution photos will soon be shot by aircraft of a Long Island, New York, beach area where the search for a missing woman has led to the remains of at least eight people.

Airplanes and helicopters will begin circling the barrier island beach later this week as federal, state and local search efforts continue, Suffolk County Police Commissioner Richard Dormer told reporters on Wednesday.

"The high-resolution technology should be able to provide a detailed representation of the area and will extend through Nassau County," Dormer said. "We're hoping the technology will help identify skeletal remains that may still be out there."

The aerial imagery will supplement police-dog search units, which expected to resume searching later this week. Meanwhile, diver teams are already scouring the waterways on the north side of the barrier island.

Eight different sets of confirmed human remains have been found in Suffolk County, Long Island, since December, in what police say could be the work of a serial killer or killers.

Additional remains - including a human skull - were uncovered Monday. Retired Nassau County, New York Police Officer and Director of Elite Intelligence and Protection Agency, Lou Palumbo speaks to CNN's American Morning about the case.


Filed under: Crime
April 13th, 2011
08:20 AM ET

Clues show Long Island serial killer has 'strong familiarity' with area

(CNN) - Remains found Monday on Long Island, New York, have been identified as being human, police said Tuesday. The remains, along with a human skull also found Monday, were found as authorities investigate a suspected serial killer operating in the area. Police have not confirmed whether the newest remains are linked to eight other sets of human remains found in Suffolk County, just to the east of Nassau County. Investigators are working on the presumption that a single person is responsible for the deaths. The four victims who have been identified thus far all advertised prostitution services on websites such as Craigslist, authorities have said.

What are the theories on who killed these women? Today on American Morning, Kiran Chetry and Christine Romans ask criminologist Casey Jordan. Jordan dissects the leads and evidence in the case.


Filed under: Crime
March 7th, 2011
09:54 AM ET

Should teenagers be tried as adults?

A growing trend across the nation shows more states are treating teenagers as juvenile delinquents than as adults in court.

Legal Analyst and former Federal Prosecutor Sunny Hostin discusses the merits of the new trend with Kiran Chetry and T.J. Holmes.


Filed under: Crime • Law • U.S.
March 4th, 2011
09:23 AM ET

Peacekeeping mission to fight Somali pirates unrealistic, author says

The Somali pirates who captured seven Danes last week in the waters of the Indian Ocean have reportedly moved the victims to land, making a potential rescue mission more difficult.

Author of "The Pirates of Somalia" Jay Bahadur has studied and lived among Somali pirates. Bahadur talks to Kiran Chetry and Ali Velshi about his time with them and says an international peacekeeping mission to combat piracy is unrealistic.


Filed under: Crime • World
March 4th, 2011
08:02 AM ET

Man who shot U.S. airmen possibly influenced by social media

The man accused of killing two US. service members at a German airport Wednesday has confessed and was reportedly targeting American soldiers.

Authorities say the 21 year-old suspect in custody is a recently radicalized Muslim who told investigators he acted alone. CNN Terrorism Analyst Paul Cruickshank talks to Kiran Chetry and Ali Velshi about the recent attack and what might have influenced the the man in custody.


Filed under: Crime • U.S. Troops • World
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